Real talk on race: Why I had to stop saying ‘some White people’

 Former Lake Arthur , LA Detective Raymond Mott at a KKK rally. (Photo Source: Facebook)
Former Lake Arthur, Louisiana, Detective Raymond Mott at a KKK rally. (Photo source: Facebook)

“You hate White people.”

I’ve been charged with bigotry on a fairly consistent basis since I began writing about cultural issues. People get defensive and need to label you when presented with ideas they find uncomfortable. Ideally, it’s best to engage people on their terms and lower defenses before asking them to think critically about ideas they hold dear. I try to do that, but I don’t defer to ignorance or soften what I say when it has to be said. I do try to avoid crass generalizations or assumptions.

But I avoid saying “some white people.”

Writing about race online is an open invitation for hateful emails and tweets from Twitter trolls trying to bait you into some kind of cyber confrontation. One of the most common grievances I’ve heard is that I “think all white people are racist.” This kind of retort is a tactic meant to purposely obscure the points that I make regarding white supremacy in American culture. But every time I get one of those arrows fired at me, it fortifies my belief that I can’t soften my stance. I can’t retreat to “some white people.”

When discussing racial issues, we cannot pretend that all bigotry is equal. It renders the discussion empty to reduce it to personal meanness or problematic individuals. This is a cultural problem and it should be addressed as such. Every Halloween, white people routinely don blackface. Now, does that mean that every white person does so? Of course not. But, it’s unnecessary for me to point out that fact when the behavior is so routine that it indicates a deeply ingrained cultural belief. For the same reason that we say “America has an obesity epidemic,” we have to say white people have a race problem. Saying “some Americans are obese,” helps us all feel better and decide that we’re “not the problem.” But, when you present the problem as something that is widespread and entrenched, it communicates a certain societal urgency. This is who we are and we have to make wholesale changes to address it.

Saying “some white people” only makes it easier for an individual to say “that’s not me” and deflect. They can tell themselves “I have Black friends.” They can tell themselves “I don’t say the N-word.” They can tell themselves “I voted for Obama–TWICE.” And, they can decide that the problem is somewhere “over there.” Racism is never “me.” It’s never their friends or family. As long as white Americans are comfortable deflecting, white supremacy remains strong in this country. When I say “white people,” it’s to make sure everyone understands that this is a societal issue that is centuries-old. The “Colored Only” signs of the Jim Crow era were just the later manifestation of a supremacist ideology that forged the entirety of the modern western world and was exported throughout the globe via imperialism. You being buddies with a Black guy at work does nothing to address that reality. You have to view it through a larger lens. The entrenched white supremacy that conditions us to cross the street when we see a Black guy coming is also what makes a Black student more likely to get suspended and Black crime to be prosecuted with more vigor and zero tolerance.

Just this week, the New York Times published a piece regarding the resurgence in heroin addiction among young white people over the last ten years. In the piece, entitled “In Heroin Crisis, White Families Seek Gentler War On Drugs,” it is revealed that more and more white voters and politicians are looking to soften the approach to curbing the drug epidemic. No police battering rams in the suburbs like the ones that we saw breaking through doors in inner cities throughout the 80s and 90s. No ridiculously long drug sentences for possession or petty dealing. No stigmatizing reports about “heroin babies” a la “crack babies” and no presidential push to vilify heroin dealers. Because white parents and politicians empathize with young white kids. Just because you’re not burning a cross on a lawn, doesn’t mean you aren’t endorsing or enabling white supremacy and racist double standards. It doesn’t mean you see yourself when you see Black and other non-white people. Racism is more than intentional malice; it is cultural conditioning. Black lives didn’t matter so much to politicians who were passing down strict sentences that disrupted and destroyed Black families. They didn’t matter much to politicians when Black voters asked for reform and treatment, as opposed to aggression and incarceration. Because those politicians didn’t empathize with Blackness. But when a young, suburban white girl named Courtney Griffin overdoses, those who empathize with her need to understand why it happened and how to prevent it from touching them and those like them ever again. And those white folks who empathize have the political leverage to actually affect change in a way that is compassionate and comprehensive. When it’s Keshia from East New York, however, there is little-to-no empathy from those outside her community. If that community has no political leverage to seek similar compassion from the powers-that-be, Keshia’s death becomes ammo for politicians to “crack down” and increase their “war” on drugs. The language is different because the approach is different; and the approach is different because the spirit fueling it is different.

Whether or not you think “all white people are racist” is more or less irrelevant in the wider picture. It starts with individual behavior but it doesn’t end there; because the structural and institutional problems will still affect Black peoples’ liberties and mobility. The reason why white racism is bigger than bigotry is because that racism fuels so much of how we determine who has access to resources and influence in this country. White fraternities and sororities declaring via chant or email that they don’t want Black people isn’t just problematic because its socially exclusionary. It’s most problematic because those college kids are in the pipeline to power and influence in this country and they will one day be racist CEOS and politicians. They will be in positions of power and influence because of their race and background and they will bring their racist ideologies with them. I’d have to be quite naive to believe that they are a political or ideological minority.

So this conversation can’t be reduced or “softened” in language to make it more palatable for those who aren’t invested in addressing the issue being presented. I won’t say “some white people” to make you feel better about your compliance with and/or apathy towards white supremacy. I won’t pretend that all bigotry is the same or that me having white friends means that white supremacy is somehow diminished or selective. It’s everywhere. It’s in everything. It conditioned you. It conditioned me. And we can’t break it by pretending it doesn’t exist. We like to pretend we’re the ones who “get it,” but I don’t know if the average white person “gets” that.

And some white people aren’t really trying to get it.

Stereo Williams
Stereo Williams

Todd "Stereo" Williams, entertainment writer based in New York City. He co-founded Thirty 2 Oh 1 Productions, an indie film company.

78 Comments
  1. I’ve honestly given up having respectful discussions with White people about race. They generalize all Black people as criminals, but turn around and get mad when you point out things like slavery. They’re just so full of shit. I just tell them the ugly truth, and if I hurt their precious feelings oh well.

    1. Slavery is not a good example because white people can reply that at the height of slavery in the USA, only 1.4% of people (some of whom were black they happily regurgitate) owned slaves. Maybe you didn’t know this.

      Whites can also further tell you how your own African ancestors sold your people to Jewish and Arab slave traders. Then they’ll probably tell you how Brazil/South America had 30x the slaves as the USA and the Middle East had 100x the slaves the USA. And they might remind you that slavery was ingrained in world culture for thousands of years before the USA was a twinkle in George Washington’s eye. Then they might tell you how the USA was instrumental in stamping out the worldwide culture of slavery.

      At the end of their diatribe on slavery, white people might invite you, at their expense, to pack up and head back to South Africa or Sudan or Nigeria or Chad or any number of places blacks are in control.

      1. “Slavery is not a good example because white people can reply that at the height of slavery in the USA, only 1.4% of people (some of whom were black they happily regurgitate) owned slaves. Maybe you didn’t know this.”

        Still doesn’t really excuse anything. It happened.

        “Whites can also further tell you how your own African ancestors sold your people to Jewish and Arab slave traders.”

        White people dominated the market. They were the ones who sailed ships to Africa, and then to Europe and America. It wasn’t some Africans sailing up to America saying “hey guys, here’s some slaves.” They came there looking for slaves.

        “Then they’ll probably tell you how Brazil/South America had 30x the slaves as the USA and the Middle East had 100x the slaves the USA. And they might remind you that slavery was ingrained in world culture for thousands of years before the USA was a twinkle in George Washington’s eye. Then they might tell you how the USA was instrumental in stamping out the worldwide culture of slavery.”

        That’s nice, but we’re talking about America.

        1. You’re wrong about who dominated the slavery market even at the height of USA slavery. Completely. I encourage you to research this.

          I noticed you didn’t respond to the line about slavery being a part of world culture long before the USA was a thing. Many African countries like Egypt have extremely robust histories filled with maltreated slaves.

          1. Get the fuck out of here with that revisionist history bullshit. The slave trade was dominated by Europeans. I don’t give a fuck about what the Arabs or anyone else did. White people brought Black people to America as slaves, and sold them like cattle.

            Take responsibility for your own actions. Isn’t that what you guys always tell us lol?

          2. The slave trade was dominated by Arabs and the people of the Middle East. You have an agenda and there is no need to go any further, although, I’d like to leave you with this thought–Was Egypt the cradle of civilization? Did Egyptian culture encourage slavery? How long before Europeans were “out of their caves” did Egyptian slave culture exist? Where in the world today (geographically) does slavery still exit as an institution?

            Please read more objective studies of world history. Taking as gospel anything groups like the Muslim Brotherhood say is detrimental to your intelligence and standing as an intellect.

          3. There is no fucking agenda. Arabs didn’t bring Black people to America, White people did. They didn’t colonize Africa, White people did. They didn’t fucking lynch Black people and burn down their neighborhoods, White people did.

            The fact that White people are the real savages hurts, I get it.

          4. Hold on- “White people are the real savages”- you just said that, and yet you expect people to not make rash generalizations about you?

            Are you kidding me?

          5. I have bad news for you, James Peachtree – Arabs are white people. Always have been, always will be. And the people doing the enslaving in Central and South America were white – many of them with business ties to the U.S. And Gordyman is right – it doesn’t matter what happened elsewhere; for us as a nation, it matters what happened here. And the slavery that was practiced here was like no other slavery since the beginning of time.

            “Revisionist” history is a good way to name your writing. Slavery has not been the same everywhere at every time. The slavery here in the U.S. was unprecedented in its cruelty, barbarity and horror. And, you don’t seem to know much about Egypt, either. Doesn’t mater – it’s completely irrelevant to the US slave trade – which by definition, BY DEFINITION, was “dominated” by white people in the colonies/US, most especially after the international trade in slaves was banned in 1807. That’s when the really, really terrible stuff started happening here.

            So you can take your “what white people will say” and send it to the 8th circle of Hell…..and that’s one level of Hell deeper than if you’d had the guts to own up that it is only one white person – YOU – slinging all this bullshit.

          6. last time i checked alot of white people dont own slaves today their families never owned slaves, some of them immigrated from areas in europe where they were slaves. so while slavery is a terrible thing, you honestly cant say take responsibility for something that has nothing to do with the people today

          7. It has to do with Black people of today. Not only that, but White people have benefitted from the advantages given to them by slavery. So to say that it has no effect on America today is nonsense.

          8. Bullshit. Southerners made bank off of the cotton industry, which was powered by slavery. Prior to the Civil War, the South was the richest part of the US so miss me with that.

          9. Duh is right. You refuse to see how the world got this way because to do so is to invite guilt and take responsibility. If you identify as white today it is because you are unaware that being white is a construct created to elevate you over others.Racism is a white problem.

          10. And North Africans also came to Europe and took Whites into slavery. ALL peoples have practiced slavery. ALL. But Whites were the first to outlaw it.

          11. Liar. Slavery white style is not like any of the other forms. You devils will try any excuse!

    2. If someone tells me that all blacks are criminals, I reply with the fact that in 2013 the FBI reported about 8 million whites were arrested and about 2 million blacks were arrested. Sure, blacks are more likely to be arrested per capita, but most people across the races were not arrested. For example, 92% of blacks were not arrested in 2013.

      Where does someone take the argument from that point? You essentially deflate their stereotyping. Of course, you may deflate some of your own e.g. if 8 million whites were arrested (4x the number of blacks) can we really consider the police force racist? Would a racist police force arrest so many whites? Wouldn’t a truly racist police force eschew arresting whites and focus on arresting more than 7.8% of the black community?

      Anyway, starting off with real numbers and defining terms only helps. Otherwise we’re all just stating opinions that we end up yelling in each others’ faces.

      1. White people are the majority. The percentages between Black arrests and White arrests are extremely disproportionate. Especially when you consider that Black people are only 10% of the population. White people also kill each other more than any other race and commit the most crime, but they’re the majority so it doesn’t matter.

        1. You think I don’t understand this? The term “per capita” in my post should have alerted you. I think dismissing the raw numbers in favor of percentages always yields a malleable view that can be skewed to support whatever argument anyone is trying to make. Raw numbers are your friends.

          1. You use the percentage argument against us, but you get mad we use it against you. This is what I’m talking about, you’re full of shit.

          2. I don’t use the percentage against anyone. I happen to believe the media perpetuates the myth that most blacks are criminals. Conflict always sells. The vast majority of blacks are not criminals and will never be arrested. That’s the fact but you wouldn’t know it if you relied on the media for your education.

          3. But that’s the narrative that’s being shown, through the Right-wing media. That every Black person is a potential criminal and the police have a right to shoot them. Unless you’re saying that the media has no influence over the average American, then you’d be really full of shit.

          4. Clear that you never had a stats course. Raw numbers are much more likely to be misleading than other forms – such as percentages and ratios. Go away now – the adults are tired.

        2. That’s because the rates of violent crime are disproportionate – blacks commit violent crime at a rate of 5-7x whites. Raw numbers are irrelevant – you need to look at per capita numbers (generally quoted in per 100,000 or per million).

          1. Yes per capita because your government plane in the big city. When y’all white for GI Bill and help from the government we didn’t. First off you getting scew from your government to just we get it worst. All of Europe was one up until you found the new world.

          2. Really? Whites are only 8% of the global population, yet they kill the most people worldwide, destroy the most land and resources, fight global wars, use weapons of mass destruction (and they also invented all of them), and consume the most of just about everything. They invaded the most territories, committed the most genocides, and have caused and continue to cause more global pain than any primate ever to exist. They are the ONLY group who divides humanity. They drew all the borders, invented the races, used the most slaves, and told the most lies.

            How is that for a mere 8% of Humanity? Come at me with a similar non-white statistic.

    3. You seem to have narrowed your ignorant mind down to a group of people in a specific race. Yes some people are like that, but not all. There’s people who don’t see African Americans as criminals. I refuse to use the term “White people” and “Black people”, how it is used, it can come off ignorant. Yes, we have done what we have in the past, and racism and alive and real today just as much.

      I actually support Black Lives Matter Movement, it’s suppose to support the lives, and how people look at the image of African Americans. Some people take it too far, and become very ignorant about it. There can be a group of people who think similar, but look at people as one person. As one mind. Don’t judge a whole race by people as ignorant as that. You seem as ignorant as the “White People” You speak about. Stay open. We could use less ignorant people in this world.

    4. On point. They are so fragile and in denial they just need to deal with it in life. There is no talking about it with them cause they are too defensive.

      Some Becky said she was offended because I said white colonists stole land and murdered the original inhabitants of places. The truth burns them? Why? We are proud because their lies about us are destroyed by the Truth which is too solid for them to kill. They built their culture on theft and violence and lies.

  2. I get it. And it makes me incredibly unpopular amongst “most” white people. Even some of those I have met at various rallies and protest. It seems like nobody is willing to give up the inheritance and annuities such a system pays out (talking financial and social.) giving back what has been stolen seems like a principle everybody can find consensus in, but how to repair that collective blind spot is a huge dilemma

    1. I think your comments are really important for the many, many white people who don’t want to accept that “the inheritance and annuities such a system pays out (talking financial and social.)” is something that they feel any obligation or desire to repair. It’s so much easier for them to sleep at night by simply saying ” I didn’t have slaves” so I shouldn’t be responsible. You are giving them the reasons why it is their shared responsibility because of the ongoing unfair benefits they continue to receive and have received their entire life, but they don’t want to face it. Appalachurban, are you willing to pay your part of reparations?

  3. Ahem. I believe there’s a word that neatly sums up everything this article says: stereotyping. I get the author’s point. I don’t agree with it. Phrases like all white people, all black people, all Asian people, all Hispanic people, all poor people, all rich people, all people who live in this neighborhood, go hand in hand with their logical extensions like stop and frisk and racial profiling. If you condone this type of ignorant generalizing, can you really act surprised when it is leveled at you? (e.g. All black people believe all white people have stolen something from them and all black people secretly want to take it back by force if necessary.) Where does that leave us?

    1. While you’re not wrong about what stereotyping can create, the author’s rejection of the phrase “some white people” is due to the deflection most white people resort to when that phrase is used. The comparison to “America has an obesity problem” does a good job of illustrating why “some ____ people” isn’t effective. Not nearly as much attention would be paid towards healthier lifestyles and diets if the discussion started with “Some Americans are obese”. The story had to paint a broad stroke to challenge us to really start self-analyzing. Otherwise, it leaves room for us to think “I’m probably not pare of that ‘some’, so I’m out”.

      1. I thought the obesity example did the opposite of what the author thought it did.

        Saying “every American is fat” opens the door for people to logically reply with things like: Well, statistically all Americans are not obese. In fact, 65% of Americans are not obese therefore your information is suspect and so is your opinion.

        1. Maybe I’m wrong, but that’s exactly what the author wants you to do. He wants you to take a further look rather than deflect and dismiss it at face value. If the headline was “Some Americans are obese”, are you feeling challenged to learn more? At the very least, “all white people are racist” challenges you to introspectively look at your own behavior and question if it’s racist. Where your conclusions take you from there are a different story, but at least you looked.

    2. No all black people don’t think all white style from them. We know power at be started slavery because they want giving the people something to help build the new land free labor. So though most people are slave the fact that you don’t talk with your family about the crimes it commit. First off though you might get it hard white America has it easier than Black’s. Divide and concur. And if you don’t see that they are your family is why we might be different. When they suffer we suffer cause we have souls.

  4. One of the most common grievances I’ve heard is that I “think all white people are racist.”

    Funny thing about that-
    The United States was founded upon white supremacy and racism. One of the very first things that happened when colonists came to the US was the enslavement, murder, and cultural destruction of the Indigenous peoples. The colonists brought with them blacks as slaves. Black and Indian slaves helped build this country, but their labor was not to benefit them. It was to benefit white people. The systems set up were to benefit white people. All of them-social, political, religious, and economic. Fast forward to modern times, and we still see the bias in these social systems that benefits white people over people of other ethnicities/races. Oh yes, we have Civil Rights laws that ostensibly exist to protect ethnic minorities. But that’s on paper. In practice, rampant discrimination against PoC continues socially, politically, economically, and religiously. The vast majority of power, wealth, influence…it’s in the hands of white people (and men at that). Our society privileges and shows a bias in favor of white people everywhere you look. White people are not disproportionately the victims of police brutality. White people are not incarcerated in numbers disproportionate to their percentage of the population. White people are not underrepresented in politics, in the boardrooms, on Wall Street, or any other places of power. White people are the ones with the most power to write and enforce laws. When you’re raised in a society in which so much bias in favor of white people exists, it’s going to seem like the norm. Which is one of the reasons its so difficult to get white people to understand White Privilege. Growing up in a society with such blatant biases influences people from a young age. It doesn’t mean an individual has overt racist beliefs, but it does mean that they will absorb the messages in society. And these messages constantly put forth the idea that “white is better/superior/great” and anything else is “lesser/inferior”. And this message isn’t just absorbed by white people. It’s also absorbed by people of other races. That’s why internalized racism can be found in People of Color. Because they’re swimming in the same toxic racial sludge as their fellow citizens. They key difference, is that PoC are negatively affected by that toxic sludge.

    (Incidentally, we all live in a sexist, heterocentric, homophobic, transphobic society too, bc the overwhelming majority of people in power-the ones who hold the social, political, economic, and religious power-are heterosexual, cisgender, men…in addition to being white)

    1. The vast majority of Whites had nothing to do with slavery. Poor Whites were hurt by slavery, for it depressed their incomes. White people aren’t committing violent acts disproportionate to their percentage of the population. They aren’t committing other crimes in the same proportion. See I can do this too.

      1. Not very well though.
        Whether or not white people had anything to do with slavery doesn’t change the fact that the country was not built for the benefit of blacks or Indians. It was built for white people. And blacks are incarcerated disproportionately to their percentage of the population because the criminal justice system is biased against black people and outcomes for blacks are harsher than they are for whites. White people don’t face the stiff sentences black people do-for the *same* crimes. The drug war that is affecting poor people targets black people not because blacks use or deal drugs more than whites, but because of biases in law enforcement officials that lead them to target black people over white people, despite the fact that whites use drugs at roughly the same rates as whites. If law enforcement targeted white people the *same* way they targeted black people and if whites were charged at the same rate as blacks and if white people were convicted and sentenced at the same rate as blacks, they’d be imprisoned at a rate commensurate with their percentage of the population. But they aren’t. And they aren’t bc the system is biased in their favor. And that bias leads to better outcome for whites, and worse outcomes for blacks. That’s one of the many racial disparities in the criminal justice system. You clearly haven’t done your homework if you think your pathetic gotcha attempt was going to work.

  5. Thank you, Todd Williams. I agree with everything you said here regarding why you won’t say “some” white people. There has been much too much fragility among us white people, too much denial, too much willful ignorance and too much ignorance…of history, of reality, of black people and what they have given to this country, enslaved and free. I have shared this on my personal and professional Facebook pages.

    1. So it’s okay to make blanket statements about white people, because a lot of them have done bad things?

      That’s blatant racial stereotyping. Stop defending that, regardless of who does it.

      1. Uh uh. White people should be made to feel it for at least 500 years. That is roughly 1/4 of the time they have oppressed, killed, stolen from, abused, raped and enslaved everybody else since “whiteness” was created by them.

          1. Why? Because your ancestors never apologized, they never returned what they stole from so many nations and peoples (at least the ones they did not destroy with genocide), and they continue to allow you to identify as “white” even though science has proven without a doubt that race does not exist genetically or biologically. They allow the race construct to continue and even try and reinforce it.

            You are going to be experiencing splashback because you and others like you who have benefited from all of the evil which came before you.

            Does that help?

            If your generation starts up some sort of activism promoting dropping race labels altogether, and only referring to themselves as Human, that would go a long way. Lobby to remove the race boxes from all forms in the government like the EU and the rest of the world has done already. Stop referring to yourself as white try your best to see others as human and not belonging to any “race”. Only white people want to hold on to race labels. The rest of us have them forced upon us by white people. And that is because they used what they stole to build militaries and laws to protect the false construct.

          2. I am not my ancestors. I do not believe in race nor do I identify as “white”. I have no control over what other people have stolen or what they have decided to do with it. I do not enjoy benefiting from their crimes and I would rather give up my privileges to make the disenfranchised equal, if I could. I am not other people.

            I do not deserve to be lumped in with a mass of evil people simply due to the color of my skin any more than someone with black skin does. I already do my part to encourage the people around me to do exactly what you’ve suggested.

            It is completely hypocritical for people of other skin colors to make sweeping generalizations about me, then simultaneously tell me how they want to get rid of generalizations based on skin color. You say “only white people want to hold on to race labels”, but not only is that an ignorant blanket statement, it’s also completely false. There are entire movements dedicated to ensuring that “black” people continue be allowed to hold on to racial labels while telling “white” people that they cannot ever be allowed to make use of any part of “black” culture without specifically signifying a race label whenever they do so. The author of this very article has dark skin, and he spends the entire article clinging desperately to race labels. Even the title of the article itself makes use of race labels!

            Even your very argument itself makes use of race labels- on one hand, you are telling ME to stop identifying as white, but on the other, you are only making all of these assumptions about who I am and what I do and you are only telling me what I need to be doing precisely because of my skin color- a race label! Unlike me, you’re doing everything you accuse me of.

            Besides, if a criminal spends 80 years killing people but then dies, should his child then be forced to serve out the rest of his sentence? Absolutely not, that would be barbaric! So how come it’s okay for you to impose punishment on people who have had nothing to do with a crime, simply because of their skin color and what their ancestors did? Sounds like you’re using race labels to justify the unjustifiable.

          3. This is not about you individually. You as an individual have made your peace. But like it or not, you are still lumped in with other “white people” by default. I am absolutely certain you are a good person, and others who know and meet you will see that. But not at first. This is what non-whites have to experience EVERY DAY. These “white people”, mostlike you at times as well, will pre-suppose certain things about those you see in life, until you interact with them and see that they are not at all like the construct wants you to see.

            That is not the problem.

            The problem is the VAST numbers of “white people” who still strongly identify with and defend “whiteness” to the point of refusing to allow the false race construct to disintegrate. If you tell me you do not see it then I know you are clueless. It’s time to talk about all of this. Who invented race, who created this race construct, and which is the only group of humans who divide Humanity using race and borders and the construct of money? It’s those who call themselves “white people”, and nobody else. They have the power and they contol the constructs. As long as they continue to be happy and shut out the guilt of their greed and past and present evils, they will continue.

          4. If I am not the problem and I am not white people, then I refuse to be lumped in with any of them by inexact language and I will not accept the hypocritical usage of generalizations. I see that “white” people are presumptuous, but I also see that “black” people can be too, and I will stand for neither.

            As for using racial borders for money, “black people” absolutely do it too. They might not have as much institutional power, but some of them absolutely abuse the system to make money. Albums, television shows, and other products are sold using racial divisions as a selling point, and “white people” are not the only ones who are guilty of this. Not by a long shot.

            As long as people accept hypocrisy from either side, the evils of racism will continue. Consistency and respect are a two-way street.

          5. You do not get to choose, sorry. Perhaps you might undetstand why blacks and Asians and Latinos hate being lumped in with their lowest. But if you identify as “white” then you are still the problem.

          6. I absolutely do get a say in how people view can rightfully me, as does anyone else. If minorities get a say, then so do I.

            I do understand why minorities hate being lumped in with their lowest. That is why I also hate being lumped in with my lowest. I stand for neither. I am consistent. You are not.

            I have already told you that I do not identify as white. I am Irish-Italian, and it is especially ignorant of you to lump me in with every other “white” person seeing as when Irish and Italian immigrants arrived in America, they were not seen as white. They were seen as something inferior.

          7. You were not alive when Irish and Italians were not seen as white. The important thing is that they are “white” today because the race construct needed to become larger. The privileges conferred by being “white” are not part of Irish and Italian identity.

            You might be innocent, but you will be lumped in with “white people”. I am not white, have no criminal record, am not poor or uneducated, but I have to bear the stereotypes (without further info) until I demonstrate that I am not part of the stereotypes. You have to do the same.

          8. That’s what I’m saying, for the third time, I do not identify as “white”. That is not part of my cultural identities.

            I do not have to accept that my stereotype is true anymore than you do. I do not have to tolerate people making generalizations about me any more than you do. Just because other people will try to force stereotypes on both of us, it does not follow that it is right for them to do so in either case, mine or yours, or the author’s for that matter.

            You’re being extremely hypocritical along with this author. You seem to think that because you suffer in ways that I don’t, it’s okay for people to do things to me that you don’t like being done to you, and that is wrong. You want to be treated as an equal without being stereotyped first, but you demand that I accept the fact that I am being stereotyped.

            Try this one out- I have always treated people who do and do not look like me equally, without making generalizations about them. You have to do the same.

          9. You just need to step back and deal with it. I know you feel it’s unfair to shut you out of the Victim Box, but the fact is that you are NOT victimized by a racist system for being white. You are experiencing disdain and whatever anti-white reactions because the group you are identified with is the oppressor. White people invented race. They are the ONLY racists, they drew all the borders worldwide dividing Humanity from itself.Sorry, but “your group” are the bad guys and nobody else is. Just the facts. You are SUPPOSED to not like it. Non-whites sure don’t.

            Your comments sound sorta butthurt. On one hand, you want to say you are not part of the construct and therefore should not be made to feel anything negative. But on the other hand, you have chosen to concentrate on your own little raincloud. Blacks and Latinos and Asians have all been victims of white people and that is frankly WAY more important than you feeling like you are being persecuted.

          10. All you’ve done here is repeatedly act hypocritically.

            I don’t have to “deal” with anything. Winning the Victim Olympics is not a free pass to make generalizations about people, and it is not a refuge from criticism.

            There are a lot of people who have it way, way worse than you do on this planet, but I don’t see you “dealing with” racism and putting up with it just because other people have it worse.

            Tell me, why are YOU so focused on YOUR little rain cloud, Mark?

          11. I am seeing the white whine a lot these days. Notuntil the millinium have white people been forced to come to terms with their history. You dont like it and I get that. But it is not going away.

            You do not get to choose because people are not under your control. White people have a problem with control and justice and honesty. All these centuries they have ignored and denied responsibility. Now they cant do it. If others want to blame you in the name of all “white people” there is nothing you can do about it.

            I dealt with racism by becoming twice as good at my work, doing my job twice as goos as my cowerkers and making more money than those who claim all non whites are lazy and poor. I live my defense so I never have to explain myself. I am not white.

          12. But you are explaining yourself, and you’re doing so by being exactly as prejudiced as those around you. You’re a hypocrite, plain and simple.

          13. Im not white. Thats why. This is not a “we” problem. This is a WHITE problem. White people created the races and racism. White people used it for gain and for oppression. This is not “our” problem. Racism is not a human trait. It is a WHITE trait. Look around. Who is it trying to separate from others and close things off. Not us.

            You just dont like it. You get lumped in unless you show otherwise. You are probably ok. That is unless all your friends are only white.

  6. OK am going to make this short because my post was not posted had to sign up. James Peachtree you talk about who control the slave route the Dutch WIC. Yes the Arab help with the enslavement of the people from the horn. Yes we was first enslave by the Arabs in 646ad. After the burning of the library of Alexandra. When religion the power of the land when our Ethiopian priest try to civilize you and give you morals you kill them and years we had Constantine. Am all over don’t have time with you. Talk about people putting up wall to keep you out. How you ran my people to swamp lands to get away from you. My maroon family that the EU enslaved around the world. You talk about Africa having slave show me before the Arab invasion. And if Africa had slave European refine the meaning of slavery. No African country ever profit from slavery like how y’all did not a few soldier been slave and release but the slavery where you took our god and give us some fairytale. America end physical slavery and refine the shit again with financial slavery. These MF just don’t get it with there racist ass. Smh everything Europe or America ever had was from the back of us. You said America free slave like she did it willingly AB only free slave who want in arm rebellion and said if he could of save the union without us he wouldn’t have. We give the world the idea of freedom with or civil right struggle which the world benefit from you kill all our leader s miseducated us drug us note trying to defeminize us. You corrupt African to be leader to help enslave and continue to tape us of or natural resources. You polite the food and water the air talk about a cancer. I had to go read more of his shit. Talking about blacks s criminals but wouldn’t say blk on blk crime rise in the 70s when they bring the drugs to our community to distroy the blk power movement and send our men to jail which foxtrot our little family structure we was trying to put together after 400 years of slavery bitch don’t want to except fault. With the government help to destroy business and change line do or vote don’t count. He acting like they still not systematically trying to distroy is though media. He so dum don’t even know he been enslave himself. I don’t have to hate you but don’t tell me not to be upset and say how I feel you done and doing. Deal with the crime of your country and your people before you look to say shit to black people. We are the sun people which is life on the surface of the earth you don’t need it you can adoupt to your own climate.

  7. Let’s be correct most white people are racist but all benefit from it some more than others. Even if we have a black supremacist in office he can v change the faithe of black people how strange it is you was able to build a army and fortante 500 companies which mostly white work. They talk about oh the Jews but would say there country support the Nazi state and those Wahhabi state who with the Vatican and the EU to implement there plan. Y’all need to go free yourself

  8. I feel like taking the approach the LGBTQ community took and asked people who weren’t gay or queer to be their allies was a very successful approach to getting their issues recognized and validated.

    I’m really trying to figure out a way where we can go from shunning each other to sticking up for those who have and continued to suffer from neglect and abuse from a system that it not willing to recognize their voice.

    Any opinions? yes, no, maybe??

  9. In my humble opinion,discussions that condone generalizations of anyone are very heartbreaking. This
    is especially true for the children of today and future generations, many of whom are growing
    up and living in areas without racial, religious or ethnic majority, including my grandchildren. I would be saddened to see that change as they grow up and become exposed to more “us” and “them” rhetoric. I also often wonder where multi-racial people and families that consist of more than one race, ethnicity, etc. (like my own) come into the discussion? All people are very complex. The sanctioning of generalizations of anyone risks limiting everyone’s future.

    1. So are you teaching them that “every race is good” (a bad lesson), or “there is no such thing as races. Humans come in every shape, size and shade” (good lesson). The ignorant and uninformed think there are actually groups of humans which each constitute a “race” based on appearance. That is a lie, and a scientific falsehood.

  10. I get what he is saying, but he is wrong onumber at least two levels. One, this author has a history of stereotyping. And Two, as a white guy with mostly white friends and a mostly white family, I can tell you that when someone uses the phrase “All white people”, the response is not one of introspection and self analysis. It makes even logical people reject everything the person says. And it makes them become defensive and take a retaliatory stance. Just look at the comments here to see that that is true. It really moves the conversation into an US vs Them situation. Which, as he has pointed out, as much power as Whites control in this country, puts the black community at a disadvantage. Racism won’t be solved, or at least progress won’t be made by one side. Side note, can someone explained why blackface is so appaled? Or why a white person’s accurate impression of a particular black person( i.e. bill Cosby) is considered so heinous? I am not phrasing my question as a lead in to an already prepared defense. I’d like an honest discussion on it

  11. So you try not to make generalizations, yet you refuse to talk about white people without using generalizations while expecting other people to not do the same to you.

    Absolute height of hypocrisy. Make all the excuses you want, you’re being a hypocrite.

  12. Is there a difference when we talk in terms of facts and social problems vs. amongst ourselves in personal conversation with friends? I had a colleague that constantly made comments like “Whole Foods is the white people store”, or if your mother were white then that white police officer would have been nicer to her (not that he was abusive, not even mean, just serious and strict). Then her sibling made a comment: “that’s why white people are better off, they learn to invest their money better than us.” Now, I understand that when we talk about social issues that affect class and race, there is NO WAY to get around the advantage that white people have developed over centuries. BUT, when we talk about them the way these persons I described do, is that widening the divide? Is that over-generalizing? Is that discriminatory?

  13. As a white guy, I get the thrust of this article. The US is and has been a racist society from the beginning, an empire built on slavery and racial superiority.

    And I appreciate the author’s contention that “some white people” just helps guilty white liberals assuage their own guilt and deflect their contempt to the “inferior” white people who overtly harbor these beliefs. I do not exclude myself from this; I am a product of my society and while I do not espouse any overtly racist beliefs, racism comes to you with your mother’s milk in this country.

    But I will say this: there are a lot of disaffected white people, black people, Latin American people, poor and middle class people of any race, women, elderly, kids, etc, etc. My point is we need fewer labels for people, not more, and this worsening trend of boxing everyone up by race, sexual orientation or identity, job or class, only atomizes us further. So black people have a lot of historical weight to carry, but they can’t afford to alienate themselves from well-meaning whites. This was a mistake Malcolm X made, to his detriment, and we can’t afford to make the same one. Ditto for white people; just “checking your privilege” or bragging about having nonwhite friends isn’t enough anymore. Looking for friendships and equal partnership with black or Latin American or whatever people and uniting against those who are splitting and atomizing all of us is necessary.

    I’m not going to sit here and say that race isn’t important; it is. But we all are letting ourselves get chopped up into smaller and smaller cohorts, while the real criminals take advantage of all of us, regardless of our race. Time for a big umbrella movement; maybe if we could get it going, we could solve some of our racial and cultural differences by dint of simply working together as equals.

  14. I look at all the horrific tragedies and wars over the past 200 years, which include countless genocides (of mostly “white” people such as Jews, Slavs, Armenians, Greeks, Circassians, Ukrainians, Bosniaks, etc.) and atrocities (such as the Nanking Massacre, Hama Massacre, Jeju Massacre, Wola and Odessa Massacres, to name a few), and I try and compare that to the history of Untied States, and despite all of the reprehensible things this country has ever done as a nation (such as slavery and ill-treatment of natives and various other groups throughout time), it simply does not compare to the rest of the world. Black people in America have never suffered an inch of what black people have suffered at the hands of other black people in Sudan, Somalia, and Rwanda. The United States is barely a scratch in history compared to the centuries and centuries of slavery (which is not exclusive to Africans) that has existed throughout the world, and it is still prevalent throughout much of North Africa, South Asia and the Middle East.

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